Teen dies after power line accident

Facebook photo Austin Wohlfeil

Facebook photo
Austin Wohlfeil

By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers

TAYLOR – Police responded to a “tragic accident” that shocked the community and claimed the life of a 16-year-old Taylor boy who was electrocuted in his backyard.

Truman High School sophomore Austin Kane Wohlfeil and his 20-year-old brother had discovered a downed power line behind their home in the 6000 block of Michael about 8 p.m. July 8. Taylor Police Chief Mary Sclabassi said they had seen smoke emanating from a line.

According to police reports, Austin had shot water at the line with a large squirt gun. Both brothers then “received a jolt and were knocked down.” It was uncertain if Austin had any physical contact with the line, but he remained on the ground.

Austin’s father – whom had been away from the house but returned when his sons called him – attempted to administer aid before responders arrived and transported Austin to Beaumont Hospital – Dearborn, where he was pronounced dead from his injuries.

Last week’s storms caused a reported 60,000 outages throughout the region, mostly in southern Wayne County, according to DTE.

A family friend has started a crowd-funding and memorial page on YouCaring to help cover expenses: www.youcaring.com/keith-and-moey-wohlfeil-599022#.V4FSOUzytVR.facebook.

(James Mitchell can be reached at james.a.mitchell37@gmail.com.)